Can you kill mold with bleach?
Do NOT use Chlorine bleach to kill mold or disinfect moldy areas. It is not an effective or long lasting killer of mold and mold spores Read more. Bleach is good only for changing the color of the mold and watering the roots of the mold. CHLORINE BLEACH IS INEFFECTIVE IN KILLING MOLD FOR THESE REASONS:
(1) The object to killing mold is to kill its “roots”. Mold remediation involves the need to disinfect wood and wood-based building materials, all of which are porous materials. Thus, chlorine bleach should not be used in the mold removal process. The use of bleach as a mold disinfectant is best left to kitchen and bathroom counter-tops, tubs and shower glass, etc.
(2) Chlorine Bleach does kill bacteria and viruses, but has not been proven effective in killing molds on surfaces that are not porous. 99% of a bottle of bleach is water. Water is one of the critical elements necessary for the growth of harmful bacteria and mold. Current situations where bleach was used in an attempt to kill mold, it re-grew and regenerated mold and bacteria twice the CFU counts than were originally found before bleaching, within a short period of time. Like an old wives tale, we’ve been led to believe that using bleach will kill some bacteria and mold. It’s what we learned from our parents and have carried on this misconception for years. The strains now associated within Indoor Air quality issues are resistant to the methods our grandmothers employed to clean-up mold.
(3) What potential mold “killing” power chlorine bleach might have is diminished significantly as the bleach sits in warehouses, on grocery store shelves or inside your home or business. Bleach losses 50% of its killing power in just the first 90 days inside a never opened jug or container. Ultra violet light breaks down the Chlorine which is constantly escaping through the plastic walls of its containers.
(4) The ionic structure of bleach prevents Chlorine from penetrating into porous materials such as drywall and wood, it just stays on the outside surface, whereas mold has enzyme roots growing inside the porous contraction materials, however, the water content penetrates and actually FEEDS the mold. This is why a few days later you will notice darker, more concentrated mold growing on the bleached area.
(5) Chlorine Bleach accelerates the deterioration of materials and breaks down the fibers of porous materials.
(6) Chlorine Bleach is NOT a registered EPA disinfectant designed to kill mold. You can verify this important fact for yourself when you are unable to find an EPA registration number for killing mold on the label of any brand of chlorine bleach.
(7) Chlorine bleach off gases for a period of time. Chlorine off gassing can be harmful to humans and animals. It has been known to cause pulmonary embolisms in low resistant and susceptible people.
(8) Chlorine bleach will evaporate within a short period of time. If the bleach evaporates and the surface is still wet, or moisture is still in the contaminated area (humidity, outside air dampness), you could have the contamination process immediately start again and to a greater degree.
(9) Chlorine is a key component of DIOXIN. One of the earliest findings of dioxin’s toxicity in animals was that it caused birth defects in mice at very low levels. This finding led to dioxin being characterized as “one of the most potent teratogenic environmental agents”. The first evidence that dioxin causes cancer came from several animal studies completed in the late 1970’s. The most important of these, published in 1978 by a team of scientists from Dow Chemical Company, led by Richard Kociba, found liver cancer in rats exposed to very low levels of dioxin. This study helped establish dioxin as one of the most potent animal carcinogens ever tested and, together with the finding of birth defects in mice, lead to the general statement that dioxin is the “most toxic synthetic chemical known to man.”